I was hoping to get it out to a Test & Tune last month, but Missouri weather was Missouri weather, and surprise snow + low temperatures got that event canceled. Thankfully, I had another opportunity during the KC SCCA novice school since I was instructing and one of the perks of that job is free runs during the lunch break. We didn’t have any dedicated course workers for these runs, so pardon the latent cone carnage and brief moments of confusion from downed, moved, and absent cones. It’s not exactly my finest driving either, but it sure was fun.
I think the biggest hurdle to overcome was the manual steering rack. It’s been pretty benign so far on the street, so I was caught off-guard a few times by how it weights up when pushed and the effort required to get the right inputs. Outside of that, it turned out to be pretty intuitive and mostly well-behaved, even with my shot-in-the-dark alignment and suspension settings. I didn’t run into any mechanical problems either, apart from some rear tire rub that will be fixed shortly with spacers.
Compared to the 11th PAX / 9th raw (out of 128 drivers) times I got with my STR NC on the next day with the course almost entirely unchanged (video below), the Exocet was just a scant few tenths faster on average. That isn’t particularly great if going off of PAX alone, which dictates that this Exocet’s class, D Modified, should be ~2.2 sec faster on this length of course. However, for a first outing in something that’s neither dialed in nor built to class (which would require slicks + a fully built 2L engine + somehow removing ~250 lbs), I’d say that’s a pretty satisfactory outcome.
I’m still planning on running the NC for the rest of the KC region season while I keep sorting out the Exocet and will attempt to switch into it by next year. I’m also hoping to get it out to a track day or two once I get a few more things sorted out.